Comparison of laboratory-confirmed influenza and noninfluenza acute respiratory illness in healthcare personnel during the 2010-2011 influenza season

Emily Henkle, Stephanie A. Irving, Allison L. Naleway, Manjusha J. Gaglani, Sarah Ball, Sarah Spencer, Sam Peasah, Mark G. Thompson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective. Compare the severity of illnesses associated with influenza and noninfluenza acute respiratory illness (ARI) in healthcare personnel (HCP). design. Prospective observational cohort. participants. HCP at 2 healthcare organizations with direct patient contact were enrolled prior to the 2010-2011 influenza season. methods. HCP who were fewer than 8 days from the start of fever/feverishness/chills and cough were eligible for real-time reversetranscription polymerase chain reaction influenza virus testing of respiratory specimen. Illness severity was assessed by the sum of selfrated severity (0, absent; 3, severe) of 12 illness symptoms, subjective health (0, best health; 9, worst health), activities of daily living impairment (0, able to perform; 9, unable to perform), missed work, and duration of illness. results. Of 1,701 HCP enrolled, 267 were tested for influenza, and 58 (22%) of these tested positive. Influenza compared with noninfluenza illnesses was associated with higher summed 12-symptom severity score (mean [standard deviation], 17.9 [5.4] vs 14.6 [4.8]; P<.001), worse subjective health (4.5 [1.8] vs 4.0 [1.8]; P<.05), greater impairment of activities of daily living (4.9 [2.5] vs 3.8 [2.5]; P<.01), and more missed work (12.1 [10.5] vs 7.8 [10.5] hours; P<.01). Differences in symptom severity, activities of daily living, and missed work remained significant after adjusting for illness and participant characteristics. conclusions. Influenza had a greater negative impact on HCP than noninfluenza ARIs, indicated by higher symptom severity scores, less ability to perform activities of daily living, and more missed work. These results highlight the importance of efforts to prevent influenza infection in HCP.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)538-546
Number of pages9
JournalInfection control and hospital epidemiology
Volume35
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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